Feuding Gold Bugs; Apologies to Microsoft

Wed, 2017/10/18 - 1:02pm | Your editor
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I wrote to the NY Times because its Business Day section is taking to publishing stock tables which are wrong. The Most Actives, Gainers, and Losers shown on page 8 of my newspapers yesterday and today only show shares whose ticker symbols begin with the letter 'A'.

The newspaper replied to tell me if my “letter is selected for publication... we will contact you within a week.” Nobody bothered to read it. Moreover, since I do not have a telephone number they can dial to check on me, probably it will never be acted upon.

I have to subscribe to the Wall Street Journal instead, which I now only buy based on Dow-Jones tabs about our stocks.

I'm sorry about having been rude about Microsoft yesterday. Unlike the other service providers which cop out they really did help me even though it took ages on the line to the Philippines. For why, read my blog for subscribers below. Or subscribe.

The function of customer service has been reduced to form letters—and form phone calls. Our telephone lines were not restored as promised for Monday or Tuesday and we are back in begging mode. They were supposed to come yesterday before 5 pm but did not show up and nobody bothered to call us up on our cellphones to tell us this. Now they are planning to come in mid November but have graciously offered to link our cellphones with the dud lines. You can now call me up.


We managed to get to the Balliol farewell for my husband's college's last male master. The next on is a lady. At Oxford, students live in different “colleges” which give them their diplomas. Balliol is known for its “effortless superiority”, whatever that may mean. At the party here I met a younger Balliol man manager for a US bond fund for BNP-Paribas. I asked him what a senior like me should be buying in the bond arena when US interest rates are rising and he replied, effortlessly, “Nothing.”

Actually you might consider Pimco Total Return Fund which Bill Gross walked away from in Sept. 2014. It is beating its indexes again under Daniel Ivascyn and his team which succeeded Gross. It does so with 2 kinds of short: first a 12.2% short position in international developed fixed income bonds, and second a 26.4% short position in short-term instruments.

In effect it is doing what the Balliol man suggested makes sense, by being nearly 30% short in the fixed-income field. We do not cover open-end funds like PTTRX, which mostly invests in the USA. It pays dividends monthly, so this note is for general consumption. Frank Talbot of CitywireUSA.com/ helped.


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